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Potentially defective Loake shoes?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I first bought a pair of Loake shoes in 2008. They not just looked great but were comfortable to wear

When I found a hole in the sole after 3 years, I felt it was time to retire the shoes
Because of my past experience, I thought it would be a good idea to buy Loake again and bought a pair identical to the one I had before. I'd assumed that the craftsmanship would be as great as the previous pair I owned
I bought the new Loake shoes in May 2011


I use them only at work obviously and primarily indoors. For instance, I drive to work and on an average, the shoes do not hit a 'road surface' for more than 10 minutes a day

To my shock, the sole of one shoe has already developed a hole. And the other shoe's sole is begining to split at the seams (this hadn't happened to the other pair even after 3 years). And now, the entire front of the sole came off. The pictures of the Loake show the condition
I contacted Loake in the UK to complain but they basically washed their hands off. Surprisingly, they informed me that since I bought shoes from a retailer in Singapore, I should only deal with the retailer and they do not have any responsibility.  Loake actually implied that those shoes were worn out because of overuse. Hah!


To have a reputed brand respond in this manner was surprising. Suffice it to say, I am not going to buy Loake again


I've just bought a pair of Clarks and hopefully they won't fall apart like the Loake






post #2 of 9
I ordered a pair of L1 and a pair of Strands from Pediwear. I must say the quality is not as good as I expected.
post #3 of 9
Could you post clearer pictures of the sole because unless I am very much mistaken, it looks as though you've been walking through a monsoon in them!

Have you contacted the retailer?
post #4 of 9

That dark line near the bottom in picture #3 suggests that the soles have experienced some water exposure/damage. 

post #5 of 9

I find it hard to believe those shoes hardly ever touched outdoors.  Looks like they've slogged through the marsh, left to dry by a heater and then slogged through the marsh again.

post #6 of 9
Originally Posted by phillycheese View Post

I find it hard to believe those shoes hardly ever touched outdoors.  Looks like they've slogged through the marsh, left to dry by a heater and then slogged through the marsh again.

and then a hippo decided he'd try them for lunch.


There is no way those shoes have only seen the pavement for 10 minutes a day... It looks like you have a hour walk to work each way.

post #7 of 9

Are you wearing them every day?

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi. Yes, I used to wear them during the typical working week. No, I didn't walk an hour a day. I drive to work and my job is primarily a desk job. The shoes haven't faced more than an occassional rain shower. The sole that has split is the one on the left shoe only. The right side is intact. And the hole is in the right shoe only. The left is intact.


The reason I've been shocked with the condition of the shoes is the massive deterioration. As I mentioned, I had an identical pair that lasted 3 years and 2 different countries with a lot more wear.


Anyway, lesson learnt. Bye Loake's. Am sending them back to the manufacturer next week as I have no use for them

post #9 of 9

3 things.

- There is Loake, and there is Loake. The English-made ones are of a significantly higher quality (that's Loake 1880 and Loake Shoemakers). The others (Design, L1, and Lifestyle) are made usually in India, and are cheaper. With good leather shoes, it really is a case of you get what you pay for. I've had two pairs of Loakes for about a year (one of each of the English lines), and I've had no issues with the soles.


- Leather shoes (particularly leather soled ones) need special care. You need to give them a "break" from your feet. Alternating shoes will help the leather "live" longer, rather than getting worn as quickly. You'll be surprised at how much they are rejuvenated after the day off. If the soles ever get wet, you need to let them dry fully before wearing them again. Walking on water-softened leather soles is a surefire way to generate holes. Don't put them in front of the heater or direct sunlight. Just natural room temp will suffice. You can put in cedar shoe trees to soak some of the moisture, or stuff them with newspaper if you don't believe in shoe trees. Personally, I have a pair of loake shoe trees and put them into the shoes at the end of the day, giving them the opportunity to dry out, return to shape, and let the cedar take care of the foot stink.


- When your shoes start to develop holes (it's going to happen if they're leather), if you've bought goodyear welted look shoes, take the offending shoe to the local cobbler and get a new sole stitched on. Should be cheaper than replacing the whole shoe!

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